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Team Teal

The Team Teal campaign was created by Duncan McPherson OAM who lost his wife Lyn to ovarian cancer in 2010. In failing health, Lyn began fundraising for cancer research, an initiative that Duncan connected with his devotion to trotters in 2014, co-founding Team Teal with Michael Taranto and Jim Connelly. 

Duncan and Michael are both passionate harness racing owners and trainers, both in Australia and overseas, and Team Teal is a way to associate this passion with their chosen charitable cause to fund clinical research nurses. The campaign expanded from Victoria to New South Wales in 2016, then to all Australian states in 2017 and internationally to New Zealand in 2018. 

Team Teal campaign concept

For six weeks from the beginning of February each year, all reinswomen in participating jurisdictions race in teal driving pants, striving to be first across the line to secure donations from harness racing controlling bodies, betting partners, trainers and other sponsors.

The campaign is supported by reinswomen ambassadors in each state across Australia and New Zealand who wear Women’s Cancer Foundation silks (racing tops) when competing, along with clerks of the course in teal pants and silks.                

The success of Team Teal not only relies on sponsorship by principal sponsors, but also on the fundraising efforts of the wider harness racing community, the campaign is increasingly embraced with additional fundraising coming from, but not limited to:

  • Clubs matching donations for victorious drives by reinswomen at their tracks.
  • Trainers sponsoring the wins of their drivers, male or female.
  • Drivers and trainers pledging fees and percentages, in whole or in part.
  • Racegoers purchasing a teal awareness ribbon or wristband.
  • Clubs promoting a Team Teal Race Day and seeking admission by donation, etc.
  • Local Communities, Individuals, Clubs and associations hosting their own fundraising events or making direct donations.

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How the funds raised are used 

Funds raised during the campaign support research nurses delivering treatments in newly established research sites in Australian and New Zealand hospitals, helping provide greater access to clinical trials for women with a gynaecological cancer. They will also support Survivors Teaching Students®, a program bringing ovarian cancer survivors and caregivers into the classrooms of health professional students, to teach them about experiences living with cancer. 

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